Sex in Science Fiction

Modern science fiction frequently involves themes of sex, gender and sexuality. This was not always so. During the 1930s and 40s “golden age” of science fiction it was unusual to find males and females mentioned in the same paragraph, let alone having sex.

In spite of this, book covers for pulp science fiction often featured scantily clad women, often with guns or being menaced by aliens. In some ways, little has changed: many science fiction book covers still feature images of sexy women by artists such as Boris Vallejo and Frank Frazetta, although the images are perhaps somewhat less exploitative than before.

The New Wave science fiction of the 1960s and 1970s reflected its times by attempting to break earlier taboos about what could and could not be the subject of science fiction. The men’s magazine Playboy published regular serious science fiction stories throughout this period, by both male and female authors, offering them significantly more scope than some other publications.

Two different themes emerged: one trying to explore the boundaries of what “sex” could mean in a world of altered humanity and reality, and another of exploring the position of women in science fiction and feminist issues in what had been traditionally a form of fiction written primarily by and for men. (via Wikipedia)

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Posted by on 9/25/2004. Filed under Books, Fandom. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.
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